“Ya know, this is actually pretty nice.” At least the first sentence spoken between the two of them since a week ago was a positive one. They had agreed to meet at his house. Though she had simply sent him a text saying ‘I’m coming over’. He didn’t have much say in the matter.
The front porch and driveway consisted of the same building material, cement with small rounded stones sticking out; It wasn’t the most comfortable thing to sit on.
Sunlight was shining brightly overhead and heat came along with it, naturally; the sun is wonderful at its job, someone should give it a medal. A faint summer breeze rolled through. The leaves on the tress and the longer blades of grass shuffled as if they were about to be tickled.
She didn’t reply with traditional words. A scoff was all she managed. She hated the summer. She hated how, if you were feeling too hot, there was only a limited amount of clothes you could remove before giving up and just being miserable and naked. She hated the bugs and the ice cream truck that slowly crawled through the neighborhood; but most of all, she hated the very essence of summer. She didn’t like to see everything alive and thriving. Winter, now winter she liked.
The young man knew that the awkwardness had to slowly be peeled away. These things took time. “Did ya know that it’s supposed to get up to ninety-five degrees today” he asked, adding a little extra enthusiasm to hopefully coax her out.
“I hope we all melt” she replied flatly, not bothering to look at him.
The young man let out a small sigh and turned his head to look out into the front yard. Several birds had gathered beneath the single tree that stood in front of the house. Light chirping filled the silence that had formed between the two.
He could feel the discomfort growing. This heavy, toxic sludge that was slowly creeping up the stairs of the porch and enveloping the two of them individually. The chirping of the birds was growing louder and more shrill as the seconds ticked. More and more birds seemed to fly down to join the small group that had already formed; some of them fluttered into the tree branches.
He couldn’t take his eyes off of them. The growing mass of birds seemed to be something out of a horror movie. It was like some kind of omen that had appeared and was to warn the hero of impending doom.
He hadn’t noticed that she had stood up. His heart was racing, eyes darting around trying to capture every detail of the phenomenon.
She lit up a cigarette, took a drag, and quickly blew the smoke out. “Fuck this” she said, frustration oozing from her voice. Black, booted feet clopped down the stone steps and carried her past an empty yard, a barren tree.
Copper wind chimes clanged gently above the young man.
They were his only solace.